Monday Morning Catch-Up

No, I am not back in Colorado. The week I returned from the mountains, we did get early snow (which didn’t stick), but my brother wasn’t quite as lucky. While our weather improved, his deteriorated for a bit. Thankfully, we are both back to nicer weather, although the photo above would make a nice Christmas postcard. The last two weeks have flown by with a mountain of busy-ness. Personal/doctor appointments, cat sitting for a friend, churchy stuff, getting together withRead more

#SoCS: Happy Colorado Places

Eleven days in heaven. A happy place. Mountains, canyons, cliffs, yellow aspens, flowers, views for miles. Many of you know that bicycling in the warmer months is my usual happiness, but a visit to Colorado in autumn is breathtaking. Being out in nature is my jam, whether on bike or hiking on foot. Nearer to God, nearer to the planet’s creation, nearer to the sights and smells that create a feeling of calm and peace. Unless, of course, I amRead more

SoCS: Bagging the Last Two Weeks

Gibbs bagged himself a spot on the couch arm recently, and hung out. He was happy his human was home from vacation, but nevertheless gave that “poor, poor me” vibe. Things would turn worse, unfortunately, when the poor soul went to the vet for dental and had two incisors pulled. They are smaller teeth between the canines on the upper and lower jaw. I had a cat once that had all of his lower incisors pulled and afterward, he hadRead more

#SoCS: Bike Tripping

Biking buddy and I have been busy planning an end-of-June trip to Missouri. The Katy Trail, at 237 miles, is the longest “rail-to-trail” recreational delight in the United States. Spanning East to West from Machens to Clinton, it follows the path of the Missouri River for most of its length. We will be biking the western half of the trail, with visits to the Clydesdale ranch, breweries, wineries, and historic buildings thrown in. In preparation, biking buddy and I madeRead more

#WATWB: Fox Cities Trail System

For this month’s We Are the World Blogfest, I’m going to share the Fox Cities trail system in the Appleton, Wisconsin area. These are some of the biking/walking trails that I utilize throughout the year, but most often in spring, summer and autumn. I may have gushed about our trails before, but the community that also includes Neenah, Menasha, Fox Crossing, Kimberly, Kaukauna, Combined Locks and other surrounding townships, provide many miles of natural landscape, rivers, lakes and farmland. FromRead more

My Brother Tried to End Me, Part 2

Raspberry Mountain. The glorious, the not so glorious, and the ugly. One week after the adventures on Pancake Rocks Trail, my brother tried to end me. Again. Not intentionally, of course, but what started out as a beautiful day with a beautiful view almost ended in disaster. “Come with me,” he said. “You can hike this,” he said. “Great views at the top,” he said. Brother was correct that I could hike up Raspberry Mountain and the 360 views wereRead more

#SoCS: Traveling With Camera

“The best traveler is one without a camera.” ― Kamand Kojouri Yes and no. No, in that I would not have brought home vacation photos like the one above and the over 300 captures now residing on my laptop. These are memories from a trip in which I saw amazing sights, spent time with family, and taste tested a few beers. Yes, in that many times it’s difficult to capture the awe I felt while visiting Colorado. Many of the mountainRead more

#SoCS: A Day Such as This

I aspire to a day such as this When blue meets blue and autumn is barely kicking When the geese aren’t sure if they’re supposed to stay or go When a summer-like breeze mixes with a waft of fallen leaves And Mother Nature spares us from her killing frost I am inspired on a day such as this To hop on a bicycle and ride ’til it hurts To follow a trail littered with leaves and invisible footprints To breatheRead more

Never Ever

“I could never in a hundred summers get tired of this.” ~Susan Branch~ One last summer hurrah That is all I need Til the season rolls around again And I am on my steed Summers tend to feel short in Wisconsin, but we northerners take advantage of the season as much as possible. Biking buddy and I had two wonderful days of wheeling in the sun over the past weekend, with unseasonably mild temps in the 70’s and 80’s F.Read more

Melange-O-Rama

Did you know that the meaning of melange is “hodgepodge” or “assortment?” I named my blog Mary J. Melange because I planned on writing a variety of content rather than singularly about cats or bicycles or poetry. It is today that I’m sharing a chaotic hodgepodge of stuff would have been called mish-mash were it not for Dan’s recent post at No Facilities. Great minds think alike, but I may have to outdo his assortment. Just because I can. IRead more

#SoCS: Yes to the Horizon

“I’ve been in my helmet, I can’t tell you how many times, smiling – and actually laughing out loud, enjoying what’s going on around me. You do feel it. It does enter you; it takes over your whole spirit. You just kinda want to go YES!” ~Lance Coury, as quoted and printed in The Enthusiast magazine~ Road or trail Two wheels or three An ode is what this needs Fast or slow Clutching or shifting The smiling spirit it feedsRead more

#CBWC: The Bridges of Wiouwash Trail

This week’s entry for Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge (CBWC) includes photos of bridges. A warning to all who go past Perhaps you should not pedal so fast Stop and enjoy the scenic view The Wiouwash Trail gently beckons you Its bridges take you to the other side Or bars you from a former divide. (The Wiouwash Trail is almost 28 miles long, from Oshkosh to Hortonville, WI. The photos you see here are from a nine mile stretchRead more